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The Boston Globe

Opinion

Nicholas Burns

After the Boston Marathon attacks: What we’ve learned

The terrorist attacks in Boston this week — the first in its long history — sent shock waves through our community. Their visual and visceral impact will stay with us for years to come. Amid the shock, grief and anger, what can we learn? There are immediate lessons for Bostonians but also for the country at large and our many allies overseas.

One of the most profound lessons was learned right here at home — planning, training and attentiveness can help to mitigate even the worst disasters. The incredible heroism and professionalism of the first responders on Boylston Street — Boston Police, Fire and EMT — saved countless lives. And had it not been for the extraordinary doctors and nurses at our peerless hospitals close by, the number of dead and severely wounded would have surely been much higher. We learned from Oklahoma City and 9/11. Our emergency and medical professionals trained patiently and methodically for the worst that can happen and it made a huge difference on Monday.

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